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2009-08-06 digital edition

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2009-08-06 / Front Page

Sales Tax Holiday, August 21 - 23

For The First Time School Supplies Are Exempt

This is the tenth year Texas shoppers get a break from state and local sales taxes.

On August 21, 22 and 23 - the state's annual tax holiday. Layaway plans can be used again this year to take advantage of the sales tax holiday.

As in previous years, the law exempts most clothing and footwear priced under $100 from sales and use taxes, which could save shoppers about $8 on every $100 they spend.

Backpacks under $100 and used by elementary and secondary students are also exempt. A backpack is a pack with straps one wears on the back. The exemption during the sales tax holiday includes backpacks with wheels, provided they can also be worn on the back like a traditional backpack, and messenger bags. The exemption does not include items that are reasonably defined as luggage, briefcases, athletic/ duffle/gym bags, computer bags, purses or framed backpacks. Ten or fewer backpacks can be purchased tax-free at one time without providing an exemption certificate to the seller.

Effective this year, in addition to clothes, footwear and some backpacks, Texas families also get a sales tax break on most school supplies priced at less than $100 purchased for use by a student in an elementary or secondary school.School Supplies

SCHOOL SUPPLIES

The following is an all-inclusive list of qualifying school supplies (if priced less than $100):

Binders, book bags, calculators, cellophane tape, blackboard chalk, compasses, composition books, crayons, erasers, folders (expandable, pocket, plastic, and manila), glue, paste and paste sticks, highlighters, index cards, index card boxes, legal pads.

Lunch boxes, markers, notebooks, paper; loose leaf ruled notebook paper, copy paper, graph paper, tracing paper, manila paper, colored paper, poster board, and construction paper, pencil boxes and other school supply boxes, pencil sharpeners, pencils, pens, protractors, rulers, scissors, and writing tablets.

No exemption certificate is required - with one exception. If the purchaser is buying the supplies under a business account, the retailer must obtain an exemption certificate from the purchaser certifying that the items are purchased for use by an elementary or secondary school student. "Under a business account" means the purchaser is using a business credit card or business check rather than a personal credit card or personal check; being billed under a business account maintained at the retailer; or is using a business membership at a retailer that is membership based.

CLOTHING

Following is a general list of clothing, footwear and backpacks, and their exemption status:

Tax-free

Baby clothes, backpacks for use by elementary and secondary students, belts with attached buckles, boots - (cowboy, hiking), caps/hats (baseball, fishing, golf, knitted), coats and wraps, diapers

adult and baby), dresses, gloves

generally), gym suits and uniforms.

Hooded shirts and hooded sweatshirts, hosiery, jackets, jeans, jerseys ( baseball and football), jogging apparel, neckwear and ties, pajamas, pants and trousers, raincoats and ponchos, robes, shirts, shoes ( sandals, slippers, sneakers, tennis, walking), socks

including athletic) shorts, suits, slacks, and jackets, sweatshirts, sweat suits, sweaters, swimsuits, underclothes, work clothes and uniforms.

Taxed:

Accessories (generally) - barrettes, elastic ponytail holders, wallets, watches.

Backpacks - unless for use by elementary and secondary students.

Baseball cleats and pants, belt buckles (without belt), boots

climbing, fishing, rubber work boots, ski, waders).

Buttons and zippers, cloth and lace, knitting yarns, and other fabrics, dry cleaning services. Football pants, golf gloves, handbags and purses, handkerchiefs, hard hats.

Helmets (bike, baseball, football, hockey, motorcycle, sports), ice skates, jewelry, laundering services.

Leather goods - except belts with buckles and wearing apparel, pads (football, hockey, soccer, elbow, knee, shoulder), personal flotation devices.

Rented clothing (including uniforms, formal wear, and costumes), roller blades and skates.

safety clothing, glasses, shoes - (bicycle-cleats, bowling, golf).

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